Review – The Green Glass Sea by Ellen Klages
What librarian wouldn’t be fascinated by a little girl named Dewey?
So much was I fascinated with her that for days after completing The Green Glass Sea she stayed firmly in my mind. I imagined what became of her. Would I recognize her if I read today about her great mechanical accomplishments in an obituary noting the passing of a great woman, a free thinker, a recluse who, I am sure, also befriended all sorts of waifs in need?
I believe that we all have known of Suze, Dewey’s friend, too. She became, surely of course, a great feminine artist from the American Southwest. My imagination crackles with excitement over those two girls just as the geiger counters must have in 1945 after “the gadget” was first tried.
Ellen Klages has written a most profound novel. I will forever ponder if those parents just didn’t really understand “what they were doing” as they built the first nuclear bomb in secluded Los Alamos or even as they smoked Chesterfields seemingly with every breath.
I will always admire Mrs. Gordon, Suze’s mother, for her sympathy and true understanding of not only Dewey’s plight but the repercusions of warfare. I still will strive to understand how parents reconcile themselves to leaving their children unsupervised and allowed to face life only on their own devices. But some parents must do that in order to work, not to mention those whose patriotic duty calls them for what is seemingly best for our country.
You must wait until very late in The Green Glass Sea to learn the origin of Dewey’s name as well as the origin of the title too. But wait. Its worth it.
Unless you are one of those readers who must read the last chapter first, please don’t do it. Wait to read Lisa Dugan calling The Green Glass Sea a “fall favorite” in Children’s Bookshelf on July 6, 2006. Save for later the short story version on Strange Horizons.
Barely allow yourself to peak at Cory Doctorow’s “Sf story of great note” on Boing Boing from September 2004. Please, just read the book. Savor the complete story first.
Experience the wonder of the green glass sea just as Dewey and Suze do.
Ellen Klages won the 2004 Nebula Award for Best Novelette for “Basement Magic” and had previously been nominated for Hugo, Nebula, and Campbell awards. The Green Glass Sea is expected to be released by Viking Juvenile this fall. You may also want to read more about Trinitite and Truman, too.